Paul Mellon Centre Curatorial Research Grants

Curatorial Research Grants are offered annually to organisations, organisations, galleries or museums to help towards the costs of appointing a research curator to undertake research for a specific project.

The grant is an award of up to £40,000 to cover the full length of the research project.

The PMC is an educational charity that champions new ways of understanding British art history and culture. Through all areas of our work, including our Grants & Fellowships programme, we promote activities that enhance and expand knowledge of British art and architecture. As an organisation, we pledge ourselves to ensuring that the histories of British art are enriched and made more relevant to a broader range of people in the future. The inclusion of voices, narratives and experiences that have been marginalised or excluded in the past will have a transformational impact on the future of the Centre and upon British art studies. Accordingly, the PMC particularly welcomes applications from those who are under-represented within the academic field of the humanities in the UK.


Curatorial Research Grants are specifically designed to help organisations, organisations, galleries or museums towards the costs of appointing a research curator to undertake research for either:

  • an exhibition or installation of British art or architecture, or related topic
  • a cataloguing project on part of a collection or archive that will result in a printed or online catalogue

Alternatively, an organisation may apply for a Curatorial Research Grant to provide replacement staff costs and give temporary cover for a curatorial staff member to work on a specific exhibition or cataloguing project.

Applications for the support of part-time curatorial researchers are also welcome.


Curatorial Research Grants are offered for up to a maximum of £40,000 to cover the full length of the project. Applications for less than £40,000 are also eligible.

The award will be paid directly to the organisations as a lump sum only.

The organisation should give details of any financial support already in place or funding expected, or being sought, from other sources.


Our funding programme supports research, educational activities and the dissemination of knowledge in the fields of British art and architectural history, from the medieval period to the present day and across the spectrum of relevant geographical and cultural contexts. Our remit is broadly defined and adapts as the interests of those working in our field change. It encompasses art made in Britain or by British artists, but is not solely limited to art made, or artists from, within the geographical boundaries of the British isles. Rather we understand the field of British art studies to encompass a broad range of subjects and topics related to the artistic and cultural histories of Britain, past and present.

We do not offer grants and fellowships in field archaeology, the current practice of architecture or the performing arts. Applications in the fields of photography, performance, film and digital media will need to demonstrate their relevance to British art studies.

If you are unsure whether you are eligible then please contact the Grants & Fellowships Manager at to discuss further.

Applications are open to international as well as UK organisations.

The grant is designed to cover the wages of a researcher; it is not to be used for other costs related to staging a curatorial project such as loans or equipment.

Only one Curatorial Research Grant application per organisation will be considered each year.

For further questions on eligibility please contact the Grants & Fellowships Manager at


Curatorial Research Grants are offered in our autumn round of funding.

Applications are currently closed, the next round will be Autumn 2024. Applications will open Monday 5 August 2024 and close Monday 30 September 2024.

To apply for a Curatorial Research Grant you must use our online system at Once registered you will be able to fill out the online application form (an example of which can be downloaded below) and provide the details of two referees. The option to provide the referee details will be available once the application is submitted. We will then contact the nominated referees with details on how they can submit their references which must be completed through our online system and must be no more than five hundred words.

Referees ideally should have specialist knowledge of the topic and subject matter and/or have first-hand knowledge of the nominated research curator’s academic career. The Advisory Council would like to be informed of the originality of the subject matter and the applicant’s suitability to pursue such research. We do not accept references from individuals who are directly involved in the project or individuals who are affiliated with the organisation (employee, trustee etc.) unless it is a large organisation, such as a university, and the individual is not personally associated with the project. If you have any questions about your choice of referee, please email the Grants & Fellowships Manager at

Applications and nominated referee details must be received by the application deadline; referees have an extra seven days after the deadline to submit their references.

If you have any access requirements or experience any issues using our online grants system (or accessing and filling out the application forms) then please do contact the Grants and Fellowships Manager who will be able to assist you.

We advise applicants to read our FAQ & Guidance webpage before starting their application, our Grant Making Policy and Due Diligence Policy can also be found there.

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